St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE) primary runway RWY18/36 Rehabilitation Project is underway. The airport was awarded a $19.75 million Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) grant, including $11.58 million in Discretionary Funds and $8.16 million in Entitlement Funds; additionally, $900,000 from the Florida Department of Transportation was received for the project design and construction, and the airport committed $3.43 million to the project’s $24.1 million total cost. The contract was awarded to Ajax Paving Industries of Florida on October 8, 2019.
The project includes the asphalt pavement rehabilitation and reconstruction and is expected to be complete by Spring 2021. New edge lighting will also be installed. Runway rehabilitation is essential to safe operations at the airport due to weathering and cracking over time. The replacement lifespan is expected to be 15 years.
Runway 18/36 is 9,730 feet in length and intersects with the secondary Runway 4/22. During approximately four months, planned from June – October 2020, Runway 4/22 will temporarily be used as the primary runway while Runway 18/36 is closed. It is important to inform the public that changes in flight operations will occur during the closing of the primary runway with flight operations occurring from the east-west using Rwy 4/22. The project is designed to minimize operational impacts to air carriers, passengers and the surrounding community through a collaborative ongoing planning effort. Communities that may be temporarily impacted by the change in flight path includes Pinellas Park, Largo, Seminole, Redington Shores, Redington Beach, and North Redington Beach.
PIE experienced rapid passenger growth in the past decade with a 195% increase (2009-19), serving a record 2.3 million in 2019. With over 1 billion runway-dependent economic impact generated by commercial airlines serving 56 non-stop destinations, substantial general and corporate aviation, and critical U.S. Coast Guard operations, the airport strives to maintain the highest safety standards and meet continued demand for facilities.